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You Don't Love Me Yet
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You Don't Love Me Yet

2.81  ·  Rating details ·  4,231 ratings  ·  623 reviews
The author of The Fortress of Solitude turns a keen, affectionate eye on the paradoxes of love and art in this romantic farce set among the members of an aspiring rock band in Los Angeles.
Hardcover, 225 pages
Published May 29th 2007 by Doubleday Books (first published 2007)
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Jul 24, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, novels
Audio book experiment II failed.

I am pretty sure this book would have blown even if I had read it on the page. I listened to it while driving back and forth to Santa Clara from my home office for a project I was working on. I was sick of my iPod so I thought I'd try audio books. (I have since learned from friend recommendations and personal experience that it is not the best idea to listen to fiction while driving.)

Anyway, as far as I could surmise, this book is about a young band trying to brea
Jason Pettus
Jul 16, 2007 rated it did not like it
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [].)

Longtime followers of my creative projects know that in general I don't like publishing bad reviews; that for the most part I see it as a waste of both my time and yours, in that I could be spending that time instead pointing out great artists you may have never heard of. However, since one of the things this website is dedicated to is honest artistic criticism, I also feel it's important to acknowledge books th
Sep 03, 2013 rated it liked it
After days of marinating in the text of Women and Men, reading this short Lethem book (which is basically a L.A. based romcom) felt like hitting golf balls on the moon. I had forgotten what it was like to turn pages often enough to numb my index finger. Sweet, sweet dialogue and pages with less than 600 words.

I keed, I keed because I really like Lethem. Whatever the subject matter he can make his characters real, relatable and even fun(ny). Conversations aren't forced, discussions end properly a
Nov 23, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
no, i most certainly do not, and if you keep writing like this, i never will. reads like an overreaching first attempt at fiction. the only thing worse than whiny hipsters is an entire novel about them. the only thing worse than that, is a poorly written one.
Jill Golden
Sep 09, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one.
I loved Motherless Brooklyn and Lethem's book of essays, The Disappointment Artist. You Don't Love Me, Yet, however, has almost ruined my faith in contemporary fiction. Because I don't want to spend more time writing about this book than I have to, I will list some of the things about it that annoyed me:

1) The Characters' Names:
Falmouth Strand
FANCHER AUTUMNBREAST (I actually had to stop reading for a few days after that one)

2) The contrived sex that made me never want to have sex
Sep 30, 2008 rated it did not like it
Oh my god. I’m actually shocked that a book by a respected author like Lethem could be this bad. Because it is so bad. It’s full of whiny, painfully hipstery characters with names like Fancher Autumnbreast tooling around a fake L.A. that makes no geographical sense (even less than the real L.A., I mean) and having lots of deeply unpleasant-sounding sex that made me lock my legs at the knee as I read. Fine. That’s just bad. But what launches this book into the stratosphere of shockingly, appallin ...more
Oct 29, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no.
Man, I heard this was not great, but I didn't really expect it to suck THAT much. I figured I'd give him the benefit of the doubt since he's written some things I loved, especially the . Oh well. At least it was short.

Overwrought prose, boring and/or unlikeable characters, not to mention the ever-dangerous task of writing about music and not sounding like a total douche.

Upon reading some of the other reviews I felt I should add that I don't have any problem reading about hipsters or sympathizing
Mattia Ravasi
Aug 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Featured in my Top 20 Books I Read in 2016:

If this book were a record, it would be a 40-minute New Wave album from the late seventies. A good one, not an excellent one (not Fear of Music, not Drums & Wires). Upbeat, imaginative, hilarious, odd in a way that makes it hard to read behind its cool. Always fun to listen, hardly anyone's favorite record.
It's not especially ambitious and it will hardly c
Jenni  Lunde
Aug 05, 2008 rated it it was ok
I saw this book and immediately knew I'd hate it as something from the pretentious "Rent" vein. But it was on my required reading list, and school begins soon, so I picked it up and read it all in a sitting, and am now ready to digest it.

If I read it all in one sitting, it couldn't have been that bad—right? Wrong. I just wanted to get it over with. The basic premise is this: a struggling band of slightly (but no more than that) misfit characters gets their big break via an inspirational (somewha
Apr 16, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like bad period pieces.
Recommended to Ryan by: myself
I would hate if my boss always compared my successes to my failures. Luckily my boss doesn't. If he did, I would quit. What he usually says when I make a mistake is 'Ryan, you screwed up, don't do it again'. Unfortunately most of Jonathan Lethem's readers don't give him that much respect. As an author of tremendous talent, he constantly gets compared to his greatest works. A comparison that is a waste to both the author and to any critical reader.

That said, at its best YOU DON'T LOVE ME YET is l
Aug 22, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Flower Sniffin, Kitty Pettin', Baby Kissin' Corporate Rock Whores.
I actually dont see what Lethem could have done to make people happy with this book. All the reviews here pretty much slate it but I think it was written as a conscious detachment from Motherless Brooklyn/Fortress of Solitude and offers a nice relief. A bit more of a disposable pop riff than a layered, carefully constructed piece of art like his other two most famous books. Yes the characters are hateable, and yes the plot meanders a bit but if anyone out there has actually moved in band circles ...more
Nov 08, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I can say I have now tried this author. Parts of the book were amusing and even strangely interesting, but I don't want to enter his world of disassociated people again.
L. Farmer
Nov 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I wrote this with Jonathan Lethem and we banged it out in a matter of weeks over AOL. Obviously I'm biased.

Jan 27, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I adore Jonathan Lethem. Ever since Gun, with Occasional Music, he's remained one of my favorite authors. His science fiction was fascinating and stylish and, though I was tepid about it, his shift to traditional fiction kept much of the flair and panache of previous work. To me, Lethem is what happens when you take Chuck Palahniuk and add literary talent.

You Don't Love Me Yet is a clever book. Though the book's main character is the bassist for a band, the true star of the novel is the Complain
Feb 09, 2016 rated it it was ok
"You Don't Love Me Yet" is at times a well written book, and even has moments where it is very well written. Unfortunately the story was just not all that interesting to me. I believe the main reason for this was because I was bored and irritated by the main character, a woman named Lucinda who is, to put it succinctly, a very lame person. She is wishy washy, selfish, and more than a little dumb. I get that this was the point, I just did not care for it, and thus the book fell very flat.
The stor
Jenny (Reading Envy)
Feb 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read09
This short work seemed more like two novels to me - the first half was this charming, quirky story of a band and this woman who works for a Complaint Line that is really more of an art installation than a public service, and the second half is the story of the still unnamed band in Los Angeles as they go through the far-reaching effects of Lucinda meeting one of her callers, as well as the often unsuccessful merging of high concept art with a band.

During the first half, I was constantly reflecti
Jan 19, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Pretentious and ultimately extremely annoying. The names of the characters alone was enough to make me dislike this book. But ultimately I didn't like this book because other than Bedwin, who was a fairly minor character (see, what did I tell you about the names) there was not one believable character in this book. It's not just that most of the characters were unlikable - that is neither here nor there, it was just they were such empty stereotypes of music and art hipsters. Maybe this book was ...more
Nov 09, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: novels
Read on train. I liked the beginning better than the end.
Joe Kraus
Apr 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
For most of the last 15 years or so, I have been one of Jonathan Lethem’s biggest fans. I think Chronic City has a claim on being the best novel of its decade, and I think Motherless Brooklyn is an almost perfect ironic tribute to the noir tradition. Add in the flawed but gorgeous Fortress of Solitude, the quietly beautiful Dissident Gardens, and the sci-fi comedy of Gun with Occasional Music, and he has as varied, funny, and brilliant a bibliography as anybody going.

My assessment of him as argu
Jan 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always feel like I should connect with Jonathan Lethem more than I do. His books often tick so many of the right boxes: music, movies, graphic novels, detectives, humor, tastefully sexy sexiness. And while I've certainly liked the stuff I've read – including You Don't Love Me Yet – it just hasn't resonated. And I really couldn't tell you why.

I mean, this one should have. It explores the ineffable nature of songcraft, the need for human connection but the danger of losing yourself in someone el
Sep 05, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2007
From the wikipedia page: "You Don't Love Me Yet (2007) is a comic novel about alternative music from Jonathan Lethem, set in modern Los Angeles"

& now for my review: this book is a comic novel about alternative music in LA and that sucks. The music parts were so cringey bad to the point where one guy opens the door to his loft wearing a big star t-shirt and there is "drama" at a KEXP Seattle type interview and it is so uncomfortable. There are some endearing and charming qualities about this
Halley Sutton
Jan 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
I mean, technically well-written, because I like Lethem's writing, but I think I prefer him at his weirdest/most speculative. This was like, just, why? Left it in the back of the airplane seat.
May 07, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: usa
Jonathan Lethem always wrote books in much the same way that Yo La Tengo make music; a reference here, an influence there, an irresistably charming fusion of twee pop, disco, free jazz and aggressive punk. Or in Lethem's case, some pop cultural journalism, some Austerian New York/Brooklyn, some satire, some Woody Allen sex and characters just overdone enough to be both funny and believable. All of it ever so slightly transparent so that you can see the layers underneath where he tries to work ou ...more
Jun 22, 2008 rated it it was ok
I'd give this two and a half stars if Goodreads would let me.

I chose this in a far more hurried manner than usual. I was in the airport, knew I was likely to finish my book in flight, and knew I'd need something to get me through the rest of the trip. I dashed into the mini-Powell's at the airport, ran my eyes over the Literary Fiction/Classics section, saw Lethem's name, though, "Hey, I've heard good things and been meaning to check him out," and arbitrarily picked this from among the titles of
Oct 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: novels
Allright, allright, Okay.

What is truly ironic is that the panting, hysterically negative reviews of this book almost half prove its premise. I guess the subjects of this book's gentle and loopy satire are truly as thin skinned as they seem. Because that is what this book is, a satire. It is no more a realistic portrayal of Los Angeles than LA Story the movie. That is, I think, its ultimate charm.

I'm not calling it a masterpiece by any means, because it isn't. But it has a genuinely understated h
Jan 16, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: The "Hip" and "Clever"
A disappointing outing from the normally transcendent Jonathan Lethem, clever (oh is it clever!) but never actually engaging. It's about a bunch of twenty-something kids in a band that blow that one chance to make it big, probably because they're all too damn clever for their own goods.

It's not that this is a bad idea, or that Lethem doesn't demonstrate the necessary affection for his characters to make them lovable. It's that the whole book smacks of trying too hard. The characters are all "in
Jul 12, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2012
Easily Lethem's worst book to date. Sure, it's still enjoyable, but would I say it's worth your time? Nope. It starts off so promising, inside of a rock band, with its break ups and makeups, its poor decisions and failure to start. They still haven't played their first show, though they are nearing thirty, they still don't have a name and work crappy part time jobs. Then there is a mysterious caller and a kangaroo and the book gets wild. I was prepared to love this, but it didn't work.

Why doesn'
Jul 02, 2007 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: People who have a love/hate relationship with L.A.
The single thought that comes to mind when I think of You Don't Love Me Yet is that it is a book that tries too hard; tries too hard to give you a 'window' into the world of Los Angeles; tries too hard to give you a distaste, but still a strangled love, for the characters.

Lethem has, it seems, taken everything he detested about the Los Angeles art scene and funneled it into a novel that he wants to be funny. He creates scenarios that have probably happened and amped them up, perhaps thinking tha
Apr 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is the book that made me fall in love with Jonathan Lethem, I had read some of his writing before this, but this was what really sent me on the quest to devour everything he has ever written. Having now read all of Lethem's novels, most of his short stories, and a good amount of his non-fiction, this is still one of my favorites.
This book effected me physically, it gave me this tingly feeling as I read it. This is by far Lethem's sexiest novel, I've never wanted to fuck an author so badly a
Sara Habein
Aug 03, 2010 rated it did not like it
I really enjoy Jonathan Lethem’s work, and I believe that this novel is meant to be satire on love and fledgling rock bands. He has a way with describing things that paint a clear picture, and I do appreciate that he takes an unflinching approach to relationships of all kinds. Still, this didn’t make me like the characters any more. While I certainly know people like those in this book, providing some amusement, those people tend to annoy me. The clothes, the self-inflicted haircuts, grand conve ...more
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Jonathan Allen Lethem (born February 19, 1964) is an American novelist, essayist and short story writer.

His first novel, Gun, with Occasional Music, a genre work that mixed elements of science fiction and detective fiction, was published in 1994. It was followed by three more science fiction novels. In 1999, Lethem published Motherless Brooklyn, a National Book Critics Circle Award-winning novel t
“I want what we all want," said Carl. "To move certain parts of the interior of myself into the exterior world, to see if they can be embraced.” 74 likes
“Listen to me. I’m shy. I’m not stupid. I can’t meet people’s eyes. I don’t know if you understand what that’s like. There’s a whole world going on around me, I’m aware of that. It’s not because I don’t want to look at you, Lucinda. It’s that I don’t want to be seen.” 38 likes
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